A gunman in Oregon was stopped by a worker who may have saved lives.
Authorities said on Monday that a 20-year-old gunman who opened fire at a Safeway grocery store in Bend, Oregon, may not have killed more people because a store employee fought him over the gun and was one of the two people killed.
Police found out that the shooter was 20-year-old Ethan Blair Miller, who lived in an apartment building next to the store. At a news conference, Bend Police Chief Mike Krantz told reporters that the man killed himself before officers could fire a single shot.
Donald Ray Surrett Jr., 66, worked at the store and tried to take Miller’s gun away near the produce section. He was killed during the fight.
“He might have stopped more people from dying,” Krantz said.
Glenn Edward Bennett, an 84-year-old customer of the store, was also shot and killed during the spree. Two other people were hurt in small ways.
Police say that Miller came from the Fox Hollow Apartments and went into the Forum Shopping Center parking lot around 7 p.m. on Sunday. He was carrying an AR-15-style rifle and a shotgun. In his car, they found a second shotgun and three Molotov cocktails.
Officials wouldn’t say what might have caused the shooting spree and said they were looking into social media posts that might be related to the gunman. Police said that digital devices were found in his home.
Krantz said that officers responded quickly to calls for help and went into the store while shots were still being fired. Miller had shot himself and was dead when they found him.
The shooting in Bend, a city of 100,000 people 160 miles (258 km) southeast of Portland, is the latest in a series of mass shootings that have happened in the United States in recent months.
On May 14, there was a shooting at a grocery store in Buffalo, New York, that killed ten people. Ten days later, 19 kids and two teachers were killed in a shooting at an elementary school in Uvalde, Texas.